Seal of Dane County County of Dane
County Executive's Office

Falk and Cieslewicz Announce Public Health Merger Goes to Madison Common Council and County Board This Week

March 15, 2004
Sharyn Wisniewski (608) 267-8823 Melanie Conklin (608) 266-4611
County Executive

Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk and Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz today announced that identical resolutions to take essential steps in merging the city and county public health agencies will be introduced this week to the Madison Common Council and the Dane County Board of Supervisors. "These actions carry out the goals we set," said Falk. "The result will be streamlined and high quality public health services for all our citizens." "These resolutions commit the city and the county to work hand in hand to provide seamless health services: one place to call to get help and one person at the top to ensure our citizens’ health needs are being met," Cieslewicz said. The resolutions call for the city and county to enter into an intergovernmental agreement within 90 days of passage of the resolution. Key parts of the merger include:
  • The Mayor and County Executive will appoint a single board of public health to oversee the departments. The existing city and county boards of public health will be dissolved.
  • The Mayor and County Executive will appoint a single department director to direct the city and county public health departments, subject to confirmation by the Common Council and County Board of Supervisors.
  • Within one year after the creation of the public health board, city and county public health services will consolidate the following areas:
    • Establish one point of entry for anyone seeking public health services, such as linking people to needed public health services, diagnosing and investigating health problems and hazards in the community, and informing and educating people about health issues,
    • Merge, with one manager, the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) programs, that provides food and nutrition information to pregnant women, breastfeeding women, postpartum women, infants and children under the age of 5,
    • Make information and data services compatible between the two departments,
    • Streamline emergency preparedness,
    • Conduct a community Health Assessment, and
    • Plan for communicable and chronic disease control.
“Because diseases don’t stop at community borders, it just makes sense to work more closely together. I applaud the hard work and cooperation that led to these resolutions,” Mayor Cieslewicz said. "These are the key actions we can achieve to bring us closer to a true merger of public health services in Dane County, “said County Executive Falk. # # #